3.5 weeks of self-discipline and self-deprivation: 3.5 weeks of counting every calorie, writing down every bite, and thinking about food every minute of the day. 3.5 weeks of chicken breasts, broccoli, and carrot sticks. 3.5 weeks of before-dawn workouts. Total loss: 2 pounds.
3 days of moderate, but freer eating: 3 days of a few fries with my small, no cheese, no mayo road-trip hamburger, 3 days of real bagels (w/o toppings), of hotel-buffet breakfast. No cheetos, no chocolate, a little cake. And ok, no fruit and no exercise, either. Total gain: 5 pounds.
Seriously, though. This is why I don't tend to stick with diets. I work hard, I follow directions, I deny myself almost all of my favorite foods, and for what? To lose a pound or two that return, with interest, the second I ease up, even a little bit, on what I eat? Even worse, I'm told it's a "lifestyle change," which means I have to do this every single day for the rest of my life or risk ending up in a worse spot than where I started. No, thank you. As between "fat and deprived" and "fat and satisfied," I choose satisfied.
That all said, I'm not quitting. I have a specific goal in mind, and I will get there even if I have to perform liposuction on myself. But I'm done with grandiose schemes of getting to a "healthy" weight. I'll do what it takes to get to my 20-pound goal before my next fresh cycle, then I'm out. It may be true that nothing tastes as good as thin feels, but if I won't ever get to feel thin, then I might as well enjoy the things I could be tasting.